Author Topic: Dr. Steven Teitelbaum, Los Angeles -- A Wonderful Resolution to my Gynecomastia  (Read 3264 times)

Offline surfmore6

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I received gynecomastia surgery in July, 2012, from Dr. Steven Teitelbaum in Santa Monica, CA.  Now, nearly two months later, my chest feels and looks wonderful, and my life has improved in clear ways as well.  I can finally go running without the painful bouncing of the mass.  I can surf without the mass squishing against my board.  My confidence in social situations has increased, and I no longer get odd looks from friends and strangers.  I have ditched the tight undershirts, can go outside wearing only a tee-shirt, or, if I’m at the beach, no shirt at all.  Dr. Teitelbaum is both a doctor and an artist.  I’m so happy to have gone to him for this surgery.  His fine work put an end to many years of confusion, hiding, and physical pain.

For years, I’d dealt with a painful gynecomastia mass on the right side of my chest, but only until recently did I even know that’s what the mass was, that it had a proper name at all.  In my mid-teenage years, I developed a puffy nipple that, contrary to my family doctor’s predictions, did not naturally go away.  From high school until the first year out of college, I visited four doctors.  From family practitioner to endocrinologist, that endocrinologist to another endocrinologist, to going on AndroGel (1% testosterone medication) to going off AndroGel to going back on AndroGel even after it only made the mass larger.  After the better part of a decade of doing this “doctor shuffle,” all the advice, care, and treatment managed to do was turn puffy nipple into a full-on painful mass that I had to hide with tight undershirts.  No matter how vigilant I was about hiding it, the mass still managed to make an appearance in the odd photograph – while volunteering in Guatemala, while hiking in Yosemite – a reminder that my coping strategy was failing.

The proper treatment for me – cutting the darn thing off – eluded me during the years of this doctor shuffle.  None called the mass “gynecomastia.”  I never heard the word.  That I didn’t know the name of the mass on my own chest seems silly now.  But no one told me and I never searched for it.  I guess I thought that if it had a name, at least one of the four doctors would have told me.  But they didn’t, and only the last doctor seriously suggested surgery.  

Finally, frustrated with the medical care I was getting, it was my mother, of all people, who via web research in late-2011 discovered that what I had did have a name, and that name was probably “gynecomastia.”  I read up on it thinking yes, yes, this is it, how has no one told me about this until now?  My other reaction was that I was encouraged.  I was encouraged that I wasn’t the only guy in the world to have it.  I was encouraged that my own long gaps of silence between treatments was not strange at all.  I was encouraged that it was pretty clear I didn’t need any more AndroGel.  I needed surgery.  Which meant I needed to find a surgeon.

Fortunately, I was living in Los Angeles now, the plastic surgery capital of the world.  Unfortunately, I had no idea which surgeon to choose.  I was a little leery of picking a surgeon off the Internet, but I didn’t trust any of the other doctors I’d been to provide a trustworthy referral.  So I searched online for board certified surgeons.  I generated a list of surgeons in SoCal and browsed their websites, watched their videos.

I chose to schedule a consultation with Dr. Teitelbaum for two reasons: his office was near my Culver City residence, and I liked the look and feel of his website and videos.  He had a confident way of discussing gynecomastia, but was the opposite of the stereotypically haughty plastic surgeon.  His practice and his personality reflected the qualities of his website.  Everyone in Dr. Teitelbaum’s office was professional and timely.  Even the minutiae – scheduling appointments, getting appointment reminders – was easy.  On the several appointments leading up to the surgery – for questioning, photographs, bloodwork and the like – I was in and out within the hour.  Dr. Teitelbaum himself was upfront, honest, and encouraging.  He was human, both an artist and a scientist, and took genuine pride in his work.  

I went under general anesthesia for the surgery, then recovered for a day in a hotel.  Dr. Teitelbaum called me the evening after my surgery to check how everything was going.  I was watching TV and missed his call, so called him back after 9:00 p.m.  He picked up immediately, and despite the late hour, he was full of enthusiasm as he told me I came out great.  He was proud of the work he’d done, and so was I.  The recovery was quick and uneventful.  I was good to go for a relaxed Vegas trip that same weekend.  

The two sides of my chest are now nearly identical.  There is a small, three-inch scar along the bottom and sides of the right nipple where the cuts were made, but this is pretty hidden and is quickly disappearing.  The pain is gone.  Running feels great.  Surfing feels great.  Socializing feels great.  My dad, who accompanied me to and from the surgery, remarked that “I chose a winner” in Dr. Teitelbaum.  I couldn’t agree more.  

I’m only 24 years old, but it still took me a long time to address my gynecomastia.  Part of this delay was that it seemed no medical professionals knew what to do about it.  The mission to get good treatment exhausted me, and there were several occasions where I had an errant “just forget about it and it will go away” mentality.  Part of it, too, was that I thought getting the surgery would mean a big hassle.  It wasn’t, though.  I was lucky enough to find a great surgeon in Dr. Teitelbaum.  I got it done, the results are spectacular, and I've put a definite end to the “doctor shuffle.”  Now, for the first time years, I really can forget about the mass and focus on enjoying parts of life more fully, as it should be.  

Offline Hi_Top_Guy

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Yay! Good for you, surfmore6!  ;D

Keep us posted on the healing.


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